Donald Trump wants to improve relations with Russia — but he might get some push back from his colleagues in the senate. John McCain, in particular, seems unwilling to ease restrictions placed on Russia by the Obama administration.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is urging President Trump not to make a “reckless” move to lift Russian sanctions, warning that he would work in Congress to reinstate the sanctions as law.
“For the sake of America’s national security and that of our allies, I hope President Trump will put an end to this speculation and reject such a reckless course,” McCain said in a statement Friday. “If he does not, I will work with my colleagues to codify sanctions against Russia into law.”
Trump is scheduled to speak with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday, the first time the two men will talk on the phone since last week's inauguration.
Top Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway told Fox News on Friday morning that lifting sanctions on Moscow was “under consideration.”
Any move to lift sanctions would likely spark bipartisan backlash on Capitol Hill.
McCain and Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) led a group of senators earlier this month in introducing new sanctions against Russia as well as codifying Obama-era penalties.
McCain added Friday that Trump should remember that the previous three administrations had “high hopes” for bettering the U.S.-Russian relationship and failed because “Putin wants to be our enemy.”
McCain seems to be returning to the maverick style that made him both popular and controversial in the early 2000s. But considering the Republican party has majorities in both houses and the White House, McCain's opposition may be less relevant than ever.
Source: The Hill